NORFOLK — Preston Pearson scored a career-high 21 points to help Kearney High boys beat Norfolk 57-46 Friday night at Norfolk.
The result marked the 100th victory for KHS coach Drake Beranek, who is in his fifth year with the Bearcats after coaching two years at Holdrege. Beranek said the credit for the milestone belongs to the program.
"It’s no secret that it takes great players and coaches. You have to have great people around you," Beranek said.
Kearney (6-4) also got 14 points from Seth Stroh and the Bearcats made 16 of 21 free throws en route to the win.
"Defensively we really controlled the game for the majority of the time. They went on a little spree there, but for 2 1/2, three quarters we executed pretty well," Beranek said.
The Panthers made a run in the second half but the Bearcats responded.
"It was exciting to see the response our team had in an adverse time," Beranek said.
Kearney will be back in action tonight (Saturday night) hosting Lincoln Southeast.
KHS girls lose in OT
NORFOLK — Anden Baumann scored eight of her game-high 15 points in overtime to spark the Norfolk Panthers to a 53-47 overtime win over the Kearney High girls Friday night at Norfolk.
Baumann was the only Panther to score in double digits as they came out on top of the seesaw contest.
Kearney’s Kierstynn Garner hit a 3-pointer with 34 seconds left in regulation to put Kearney ahead 41-39, but Norfolk’s Hailey Kleinschmidt’s layup with 21 seconds left tied the score.
In overtime, a layup by Kari Struebing put Kearney ahead 43-41, but the Panthers would go on a 12-1 run to claim the win.
Aspen Rusher and Lily Novacek led the Bearcats with 14 points each. Garner added nine.
KHS (2-8) is back in action tonight (Saturday) against Lincoln Southeast.
Norfolk 53, Kearney 47
Score by Quarters
Kearney (2-8) 12 5 8 16 6 — 47
Norfolk (6-5) 8 12 4 17 12 — 53
KEARNEY — Lily Novacek 14, Aspen Rusher 14, Kierstynn Garner 9, Sydney Province 5, Kari Strueging 4, Kaleigh Hatcher 1.
NORFOLK — Anden Baumann 15, Nealey Brummond 9, Chelsea Strom 9, Hailey Kleinschmidt 7, Karly Kalin 7, Jalen Hoffman 4, Erin Schwanebeck 2.
GICC rallies to beat Stars
GRAND ISLAND — Kearney Catholic boys held a four-point advantage over one-loss Grand Island Central Catholic entering the fourth quarter Friday night.
Despite controlling the first three quarters, the Stars failed to hang on, getting outscored by 10 points in a 50-44 loss to the Crusaders in Grand Island.
Sophomore forward Brett Mahony carried the Stars, accounting for 24 points, including four 3-pointers, and 13 rebounds.
"It’s encouraging that he did step out and made some 3s because early in the game they put their 6-9 post player on him, and he had three 3s in the first half," KCHS coach Bob Langan said. "We’ve encouraged him to extend his game. It would be nice to get some of those other guys rolling at some point, too."
The Stars (7-3) made seven 3s in the game, which ties the second-highest total in a game this season.
But late in the game, they struggled with execution, committing multiple turnovers, settling for some low-percentage shots and missing four free throws, Langan said.
Mahony was the lone player in double-figures for the Stars, who had five players record at least two points.
"Brett did a good job of getting to his spots, and we saw flashes from the other guys with making plays and hitting some shots from outside, but we just didn’t get enough of those plays," Langan said. "We had some untimely turnovers that they took advantage of as well."
The Crusaders (10-1) were averaging nearly nine 3-pointers per game. But the Stars’ defense limited their chances from beyond the arc, holding the Crusaders to just two 3s for the game.
After struggling at times to hit shots in the first half, the Crusaders altered their game plan and started aggressively attacking the basket in the second half.
The attacking mindset allowed the Crusaders to draw fouls and attempt free throws.
Sophomore guard Isaac Herbeck carried the Crusaders in the second half, making 13 of 13 free-throws, to score a team-high 20 points.
Dei Jengmer, a 6-foot-9 junior center, also scored in double figures for the Crusaders, finishing with 16.
"They were aggressive getting it to the basket and getting the ball to their 6-9 post," Langan said.
Up next, the Stars host North Platte (3-9) at 6:45 p.m. today (Saturday).
GICC 50, KCHS 44
Scores by Quarter
KCHS (7-3) 12 10 12 10 — 44
GICC (10-1) 13 7 10 20 — 50
KCHS — Logan O’Brien 7, Kegan Bosshamer 2, Brandt Groskreutz 2, Blake Thiele 9, Brett Mahony 24.
GICC — Russell Martinez 2, Koby Bales 6, Tanner Turek 3, Isaac Herbeck 20, Marcus Lowry 3, Dei Jengmer 16.